Even though it’s highly preventable, tooth decay is one of the most prevalent childhood diseases. It’s affecting 42% of kids aged 2 to 11.
A good dental hygiene routine and frequent pediatric dental check-ups can go a long way toward preventing this common problem. However, as your kid grows older, it is critical to stay informed to guarantee their ideal dental development.
This includes asking your child’s dentist for advice, recommendations, and tips to get the most out of their years of specialized skills in caring for children’s teeth.
Here are 6 key questions to ask at your child’s first dental appointment.
1. What Is the Best Time for My Child’s First Dental Appointment?
It would be best to ask your pediatric dentists when you need to take your child in for their first dentist appointment before scheduling a pediatric dental appointment. Most parents are not aware of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s recommendations.
It suggests that you take your kid to their first dental examination not later than six months after their first baby tooth appears. If your kid grows teeth later than others, you should schedule an appointment for them before they reach the age of one.
Even if your kid lacks teeth, your pediatric dentist will examine their gums and can assist you in identifying any oral health issues.
There is no need to worry if your kid is already over a year old and has not had a dental visit!
Schedule a consultation for your kid whenever possible. It is preferable to go to the dentist later rather than never.
2. Do I Know What to Expect During a First Dental Appointment?
Another thing you must ask your dentist is what to anticipate during your first visit. This can assist you in preparing for your visit, as well as your child.
When your kids go to the dentist for the first time, they will sit in your lap as the dentist examines them. Your dentist will wash your child’s teeth if they have them. If not, they will clean your child’s gums and talk about their oral health.
Just like with grown-up’s dental cleaning, several types of equipment will be used during the first dental cleaning of your child. By preparing your child for the first visit, you can avoid a negative experience and the development of dental fear in the future.
3. What Do Shark Teeth Mean, and Does My Child Have Them?
Shark tooth is a name used to explain the condition where permanent adult teeth emerge before baby teeth fall out. This results in a double row of teeth that is often troubling for both parents and children.
In rare situations, the roots of a baby tooth do not disintegrate, or emerging adult teeth’ position is not directly beneath the baby tooth.
When the baby teeth finally fall out, the adult tooth’s position will be assessed. Often, you don’t require any treatment. This is because the adult tooth commonly settles into the correct position on its own.
Even so, in some cases, your child may need orthodontic intervention (a retainer or braces) to correct tooth position.
4. How Do I Brush My Kid’s Teeth?
Oral hygiene is essential in maintaining your baby health and keep them happy.
After eating, wipe your baby’s gums with a soft cloth if their first tooth hasn’t appeared. This removes excess bacteria and sugars from their gums and maintains the health of their mouth.
When your kid’s first tooth appears, it’s time to upgrade to a baby toothbrush. Brush every side of your baby’s teeth and along their gums while running the bristles underwater. Brush your teeth twice a day, particularly before going to bed.
For babies, plain water is sufficient. But as your child grows older, you can incorporate kid’s toothpaste into the routine. Add a little toothpaste about the size of a rice grain. They can get an upset stomach because of using too much toothpaste.
5. What Should I Do If My Kid Fears Dentists?
As parents, your kid’s happiness is your happiness. But their anxiety is also your anxiety.
When children are confronted with something unfamiliar, such as a trip to the dentist, they may become anxious or fearful. That may rub off on you, making you feel as if you’re doing something improper.
Rather than stressing about your child’s appointments, you can avoid and alleviate their anxiety. You can achieve this by positively conversing about the dentist.
This removes the element of fear from experience. It also brings a positive perspective on visiting the dentist.
As a parent, you can also lead by example. Treat your own dental visits positively and discuss what will occur at a dental visit before you go. Try to concentrate on the positives and avoid using words like hurt or pain.
The more comfortable your child is with the dentist, the more likely they will adopt healthy dental hygiene practices.
6. Does My Kid Need Braces?
If your kids are old enough, you can inquire with the pediatric dentist about whether or not they will require braces. If there is an apparent problem with your child’s alignment, your dentist may recommend an orthodontic exam.
This is the best thing to do even for smaller kids because it ensures proper mouth development.
By inquiring with your dentist about braces for your kid, you will be one step ahead of the game! You can, for example, look for ways to save cash in the future so that you can manage to pay for braces when the time comes.
You can also use other alignment methods, such as a palate expander, to assist your kids in getting ready for braces!
Ask the Above Questions During Your Child First Dental Appointment
Your kid’s dentist is more than just somebody who examines their teeth every six months. They are also a useful resource that can assist you in providing your child with ideal dental care.
By asking your kid’s pediatric dentist these vital questions during the first dental appointment, you’ll understand what to observe and if your child’s dental growth is on track.
At Southeast Family Dental, our dentists focus on developing relationships with our patients, their friends, and their families. They do this while offering long-lasting dental work that appears and feels great.
Call us today to schedule an appointment.